Verkerk believes that if you really want to be sustainable, you need not only go in for technological but also for social innovation. In addition, you should raise the question about the why. For example, sustainability, innovation and meaning are indissolubly connected.
Improve the world…
The familiar motto is: Improve the world and start with yourself. In 2009, we started to make our own home more sustainable: insulation of the floor, re-insulation of walls and roof, triple-glazing in the room, solar panels, and so on. The results are delightful: gas consumption has more than halved and we produce all the electricity ourselves. The next step will probably be the introduction of a heat pump to reduce gas consumption to zero.
Increased production, reduced emissions of harmful substances
One of the most challenging projects I have led was to quadruple the production of a Yageo factory in one year, in which the emission of harmful substances was not allowed to increase. This project involved a redevelopment of processes and a redesign of the production organisation. After a little more than a year of hard work, the targets were met.
To an electric energy infrastructure of the future
The electrical energy infrastructure of the future will be extremely complex. The distinction between producers and consumers is becoming blurred. Intelligent systems coordinate supply and demand. The infrastructures of energy, mobility and internet are becoming increasingly intertwined. With engineers and philosophers, I have analysed this infrastructure and laid the foundation for a vision on how to develop this kind of complex infrastructures.
To develop values driven in the process industry
The Paris agreements (2015) pose a huge challenge for the process industry. How do you design to meet the requirements of the future? The Triple I model offers engineers a tool to do a systematic analysis. It offers three perspectives to analyse future values. The Triple I model provides tools to break with reductionism and silo-thinking.
Change tack: Accelerating the transformation towards a sustainable and circular industry
All reports on sustainable solutions for the industry show that an acceleration is necessary. Beteor, Team Heiner and I have developed a program to realise this acceleration. The core of this program is: innovation and sustainability, development of high performance teams, the art of change, and connection with meaning and deep values.